When the music was too loud for Nicktor

There comes a time in every one’s life when a small band playing rock music in a small space can be irritating. After growing up listening to punk at excessive levels of loud, one’s ears start to become a bit numb and then, as age creeps inexorably up on us, the ears get a sudden burst of clarity. When the once cherished loud music hits those ears, the owner gets annoyed and wishes it would just stop.

It was quite surprising today that Nicktor complained about the noise as we sat in hospitality at The Rec, Aldershot. Okay, I wasn’t that keen when the band started and the background music was still playing because it was a bit discordant, however, once the band got going properly, the noise didn’t really bother me.

Actually, the noise made me think about how things have changed and reminded me of my Retirement Home Theory*.

The thing is, now that I’m considered old, my peers being of an age that grew up with loud music, the usual moaners (ie our parents) no longer attend the sort of events where loud music happens. Or they go home early. At any rate, it was a bit odd hearing Nicktor complain about it.

The reason we were listening to the band was because today was the last game of the season and Nicktor had sponsored the ball, and a big group of us went for hospitality.

Okay, the food wasn’t marvellous but everything else was excellent. How Nicktor spent the second half on the Slab, I’ll never understand. Given the comfort in the Director’s Box, the excellent company and the comfort in the Director’s Box (so good, I included it twice) standing on a slab of concrete with the weather threatening would not be my idea of a good alternative.

And, believe it or not, the football was very entertaining. That could be because of the comfort etc, etc, though I suspect it’s because the players were intent on impressing the manager in a game that the result wasn’t really important. This was good because Wealdstone won 3-1.

Another highlight in an afternoon chocka block with them, was the score board with it’s occasional images of Nicktor.

To top things off nicely, Biggsy won the guess the crowd raffle! It was winner takes all and £1 to enter. He was only six off the final figure. A big cheer went up from Table 2 when he went to collect his winnings.

Another big cheer went up when Nicktor was called forward to receive the match ball. I was a bit disappointed that it wasn’t actually a ball that had been used during the game but, rather, a specific ball created for the sponsor with Match Ball Sponsor actually written on it. Of course, it had been signed by all the players, most of which have appalling handwriting. The lads who included their shirt numbers deserve praise.

The best bit, however, was when Mark Butler presented Nicktor with a new umbrella to make up for the one ‘stolen’ by Woking FC back in January.

Now, perhaps he’ll stop going on about his beloved ‘precious’. Though, of course, Slab Life 3 will be riddled with references to it.

Incidentally, the photo above shows Nicktor being presented with a certificate stating that he attended every single game this season. Man of the match, Jayden Harris is giving it to him. I do wonder what he thinks of Nicktor’s new umbrella.

Given this will probably be my last game for a while, it was a marvellous end to a season of many memorable trips to away games, as well as sometimes standing on the Slab.

In a season of far more downs than ups, it provided a glorious finale. A big thank you to Nicktor for organising it. Genius!

* Gary’s Retirement Home Theory: The music played in retirement homes is usually from the 1930’s and 40’s. When people who grew up with heavy metal are finally condemned to spend their final days in one of these homes, the music will be loud and screeching. In about 20 years, this theory will be tested.

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